Semi-Daily Journal Archive

The Blogspot archive of the weblog of J. Bradford DeLong, Professor of Economics and Chair of the PEIS major at U.C. Berkeley, a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Gene Sperling on the Estate Tax

He writes:

The Estate of Misguided Choices | TPMCafe: If only I were a more talented writer, I might be able to do justice to describing how distorted the priorities and values are that motivated the US Senate's decision today to move forward in the efforts to repeal (or nearly repeal) the estate tax.... [W]hat [does] it sas about our commitment to the value of economic mobility when we are shortchanging pre-school for those who start life with the least at the same time we give a massive tax cut to those who end life with the most[?]...

After Katrina, even the most ardent estate tax repeal advocates decided it was unseemly to push for complete repeal. Thus one started to hear so called compromises.... Let's see. The nation is at war and troops have been having trouble getting the safest equipment. Child poverty has been on the rise for four straight years. Deficits are projected to total $4 trillion in the next ten years, our entitlement challenge is unresolved, working wages have been stagnating or declining, and fixing the estate tax for the top 3 of every 1000 estates in 2011 is what we should rush to the floor of the Senate in the summer of 2006?... Why in the world then should the United Senates decide that only the most expensive, regressive tax cut perhaps ever proposed is the sole one that must be rushed to the floor?...

[Y]ou will not hear a word this week from supporters about how to pay for this tax cut so that it does not increase the deficit.... [W]e are... passing on the debt and interest payments to the 99.7% of Americans -- including our children and grandchildren -- who will not benefit one penny from these proposals.

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